Friday, January 30, 2009


I'm so glad that I have a God that leads me and keeps me from making big mistakes.......when I ask for His guidance. (mental note...always ask God!) This week, my wife and I have been looking for a minivan (Honda Odyssey) to purchase. We never make spontaneous purchases, so we know how much we have and how much we need to finance. Keri spent a lot of time searching on line and found exactly what we (OK she) was looking for, at a really good price.......on a NY dealership lot. She called a bunch of times to get all the info. We were about to leave and drive all night, buy the van and suddenly I get this check in my gut that this was a bad decision. I was trying to decipher whether it was God or bad pizza, so I slept on it. The next day, I still couldn't shake it so we didn't go. My wife was so bummed but kind of felt the same way. Come to find out after some research another car dealer in another state supposedly had the same van (same vin # & pic) as this dealer in the Bronx. Hmmmm. I'm so glad as believers we are led by the God. He saved us about 18 hours in a van.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Church Unique

Just started a book called "Church Unique." It already got me thinking about what makes C3, C3. I hope people would say things like, authentic or real or maybe great music and a relevant message. I think Christy (a C3er) from the Internet professional said it best, "I come to C3 because I know I'm going to laugh." In other words, the thing that separated us from other churches was our humor and our "realness." If that is true, and we are cool with it, then we need to capitalize on it. It should be in our services, handouts, videos, websites, etc. When someone asks me, why is your church different, I better have an answer. What are the distinguishing features of your church?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

driving home

Last night, we left a little early from the Kalahari Water Park, where the ministers retreat was held. The roads were pretty rough, at least what I could see of them. Between the sliding, the windshield icing and big trucks passing very close and flinging blinding snow on our van, it was a little stressful. I found myself several time holding on to the steering wheel way to tight. I wasn't able to sit back and relax like normal. In life, I can deal with stress as it comes and goes, but I sure wouldn't want to live in high stress continually. I think we all need some stress, but too much of it can take the fun out of life.

Monday, January 26, 2009

R and R

Today, I am pumped to pick my boy Kaden up from school and head to the largest INDOOR water park in the country...Kalahari in Sandusky. We are having a Ministers Retreat there and will stay through Tuesday night. I'm excited to spend the day tomorrow with my family and having a blast at the water park. I also get to speak a breakout session on an area I'm passionate about. My parents will be there as well for some added fun! I've built this up so much with my kids, they are about to explode! I love it.

Friday, January 23, 2009


We make time for what we value. The other day, I'm complaining to myself how I feel like I don't have enough time in the day to do what needs to be done and still remain balanced. It is a constant struggle for me. But as I thought about it, I realize that I make time for what I value. Even when I say "yes" to things I've been asked to do, but shouldn't have taken on. I broke that down: I didn't want to say "no" (I would enjoy it) but really didn't have the time. In essence I said, "I value not hurting your feelings or letting you down," more than I value everything else on my plate, including my family! Ouch...yeah it hurt, but it was true. For me, I'm a sucker for "opportunities," and must not put their value ahead of what is truly important. Am I alone in this?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

30 degrees is warm

It's funny when 30 degrees feels warm. Having been so cold so long, it's amazing how we adapt to our environment. I remember in December telling someone I ran a race in 18 degrees! I feel like a sissy, seeing that would be warm now. How conditioned have we become by our environments, culture, jobs, routines etc? Are you doing anything now, that if you would have told yourself a year ago that you would be doing, you wouldn't believe it? I think it goes both ways. I have met those who surrounded themselves with achievers and a positive environment that helped pull them upward. I have also met those in a depressing job or situation that drags them down. It usually happens so slow that they don't realize it. Like "the frog in the kettle." The water gets hot so slow they don't realize it and eventually are cooked. What environment are you in? How's it working for you?
BTW - We are still discussing our building situation....but are getting closer to a decision.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

C3's big meeting

Tonight, C3's board and staff will decide on IF/When and with Who to build an addition onto our current location. The thought currently, is to look into building a 500 seat auditorium, bathrooms and cafe (did I mention fireplace?). Then rearrange our current space appropriately to handle our kids space........all for a price we can afford. We have done our homework.....prayed....and now it's decision time.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

sectional meeting

Today, we had some good discussion and thoughts as we closed out the book "7 Practices of Effective Ministry" by Andy Stanley. We covered the last 2 chapters of REPLACE YOURSELF & WORK ON IT. Here are a couple of the key points:
- Everyone of us at some point will be replaced, we can fight it, or help raise up others and have a say in it.
- In order to move forward as organizations/ministries, we must raise up other leaders to do what we do.
- We do this by "breaking it down, handing it off, and letting it go.
- What are you currently doing now, that you can give away?
- What hinders you from replacing yourself?
- We spend too much time working "in it" and not "on it"
- How much time do you spend to think and pray for the future?
- Create some margin in your life to "step back" and look ahead.

Monday, January 19, 2009


Today, Keri and I are taking our kids sledding for our day off. I love the excitement in their little faces and voices as we talk about how much fun it is going to be. Really, the expectation can be as fun as the actually sledding. Life can be even more fun when we take advantage of the "expectation" fun leading up to the event. Then the excitement shifts to the memories that will be brought up again and again to keep it fresh in their minds. Bring on the fun!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

car salesmen

Today, Keri and I went to test drive some mini-vans. Poor Kali was transported (in her car seat) into several vans as we took them for a spin. We are doing all our homework for a purchase we will make in the next couple months. Anyway, I could easily pick out the best salesmen. They were the one's who very quickly would figure out what were the selling points in our minds and who they were really selling to. In our case, they usually started with me, but soon realized this would be my Keri's van and soon changed their approach and attention to her. So much in life is about "people skills." Whether you are selling a car, or anything else in life where you interface with have to work on your people pay the bills....and if you're really good....make the mills! ha...Ok...I'm done.

Friday, January 16, 2009

leadership is messy

Leading is never easy and almost never does everything come out perfect. In fact, if you are a true perfectionist and a leader, you will have a very tough time. The reason being is that leadership is messy. As a leader, we are imperfect people, trying to lead other imperfect people to accomplish something. When you add every one's strengths and weaknesses into the mix, it makes for a messy situation. I laugh sometimes thinking how many of the decisions that have to be made are so complex. When you add up, the past, present and future factors with peoples opinions, strengths and weaknesses, it makes things messy. So, do we walk away and quit because things may get difficult? No way! That is why a leader is needed. If everything were easy, there would be no need for a leader. That's why I tell Gary Fowler all the time, "that's why they pay us the big bucks!" lol

Thursday, January 15, 2009

unconditional love

I want more than anything to love my wife "unconditionally." But let's be honest, do we really know what that means? What about the couple who starts out so "in love" but in time they fall "out of love." The truth is then, they never really loved their spouse unconditionally, but rather it was based on emotions and feelings. If I am to love my wife as Christ loved the church, then my love for my precious wife Keri has to be unconditional. I'm doing my best to walk that out, to let love guide every thing I act and react to. I am truly a work in progress.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


In my devo's this morning I came across the quote, "Because you love me, You never show me the future or tell me how things will turn out." Personally, I wish God would show me the "hows, whats and whys," but He doesn't. Honestly, if I knew the end result, I would would probably cut corners and miss some of the things God was wanting to do IN me. Really, life is less about the destination and more about the journey. The reason being, we spend the majority of our time on the journey. In that journey our faith is tested and tried and trust must be formed. It's in those times that God is preparing us for something and He is more concerned about what happens IN us than TO us.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

guard it

It has been incredible watching C3 grow and mature as a church. Being a Pastors kid growing up, I have witnessed many churches in their maturing process. One thing I never want to lose is our innocence and authenticity. It's amazing how honest my little 3 year old is about everything. Some would say, it's because she doesn't know any better. I see their point...somewhat. But what if a growing church could keep it "real." I mean that they never lose transparency, never lose their focus about what a "church" is supposed to "do" and more importantly "be." I so much want to guard against losing C3's innocence. Does every church have to have divisions at some point? I really feel if the staff and leaders will stay hungry and transparent, it will be felt by all. To do this the "main thing" must stay the main thing (souls coming to Christ). If we as a church keep our eyes focused on reaching those who don't know Christ and never let the politics of church as usual creep in, we have a chance. May the Lord, guard our innocence and protect our unity!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

3 services

Feb 1st, C3 Church will grow to 3 Sunday morning services! Our team will have to shoulder the jump. We have a great team and talked about today what each one needs in order to pull it off. Our services times will be 9am, 10:30, and noon. I'll tell you how it goes in few weeks. Also, we kicked off a Sunday night prayer service tonight. We had no clue what to expect, but we had over 40 adults who showed up to pray. I love our church.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Tim Tebow

Last night the Florida Gators won the NCAA Football National Championship game against Oklahoma. The quarterback of the winning team is a "class act" named Tim Tebow. Tim is an outspoken follower of Christ whose parents are missionaries. I thought it was awesome that the whole game and even after at the press conferences, when the camera was on his face you could read John 3:16. Where most players put the black paint under their eyes....his was painted very clearly, John 3:16. I heard of a preacher once who preached his entire message, standing behind a big cross. I think that is how we should live our lives. That when people look "at" or "to" us, they have to look at Jesus first. What do people see when they look at you?

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


I heard a great quote that isn't mine, but here it is; "They've never raised a monument to a critic, only to those who were criticized." Which side are you on?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

the loss

Last nights Buckeyes loss to Texas was devastating to all OSU fans. So close, yet so far away. Here is my take:
- Tressel coached as well as he could have.
He had a young QB that couldn't throw an accurate pass to save his life and receivers that (except for 1 catch) are less than stellar. AND our best running back got hurt and did not come back in. I know coach Jim Tressel will get all the heat, but I give him props for taking a less talented team (this year) and almost winning against the team that should've been in the National Championship Game.
- It all hinged on 1 play.
I hate when a big game comes down to a judgement call. I know Tressel challenged the play and in order to reverse any play, there has to be irrefutable evidence going the other way. I watched the replay and it was so close, I don't think it could have been changed whichever way the original call went. So had the referee marked the ball back 6 inches, the replay could not have changed the call on the field.
- It was the best game of all the big bowl games so far, that is for sure.
ADD moment...there is a little girl here in the coffee shop with her dad...and her pants are on backwards...way to go DAD! (I've been there too)

Sunday, January 4, 2009

open hand

Planting a church comes with it's ups and downs. I heard one pastor say; "How do you grow a church to a 1,000? By letting 2,000 go." Another statistic of church planting says that HALF of those who started with you will move on in the first couple years. This is a tough part of church planting. We have tried to operate from the paradigm of an "open hand." Meaning that when people want to leave, we bless them and help them plug in elsewhere. Many times the conversations are because of the travel distance, but regardless it still is a bummer. I have learned that trying to convince people to stay is never beneficial and usually delays the inevitable. Besides, it's not about building "A" church, it's about building "THE" CHURCH!

Saturday, January 3, 2009


We had a great time last night at ManUp! We watched some football and had some serious tournaments with cornhole, rock/paper/scissors, Wii bowling and Euchre. Then we gave the challenge for men to step up and be better Men and husbands. We had 24 sign up and will have several more sign up Sunday. We are believing God to bring health to our marriages through this challenge. I'll let you know in 5 weeks!

Thursday, January 1, 2009


What kind of year will 2009 be? When you boil it all is really our choice. I can choose to live a life that is based totally on reaction. Which basically says, what happens to me and inside of me is determined by outside factors. In this case, I am at the mercy of things I can't control. Or, I can choose to live my life intentionally. I can do this by setting goals and steps to reach them. Also, by deciding how I will react when things don't go my way. What are things that need to change inside of me, in order for God to grow me to the next level? Basically, what needs to change? How will I change it? When will I change it?
What will you change in 2009? Or will you be in the exact same place next year at this time?